Victor Garvey closes Encant ahead of new Soho opening

By Sophie Witts contact

- Last updated on GMT

Victor Garvey closes Encant ahead of new Soho opening

Related tags: Covent garden

Chef Victor Garvey has closed his London restaurant Encant ahead of launching a new Soho site later this year.

The Spanish restaurant originally opened as Duende in 2016​ but shut its doors at the end of December 2017.

Garvey, who also runs the lauded Rambla in Soho and wine and cheese bar Sibarita in Covent Garden, said he wanted to focus on a new project.

Despite a growing number of restaurants buckling under pressures such as rising costs​ and market saturation, the chef added that Encant had still been trading well.

“Encant is very special to me as it was my first solo restaurant, and it’s still as busy as ever, but creatively the team and I feel we’ve taken it as far as we can,” Garvey said in a statement.

"Sibarita and Rambla - which are both performing better than I could ever have imagined - opened in quick succession and both their menus feature several dishes which originated at Encant; it got to the stage where Encant had effectively become a development kitchen for the others, rather than innovating in its own right.”

All the Encant staff have been found new roles at the chef’s other restaurants, and several operators have made offers on the Covent Garden site.

Garvey said that though his existing sites have a ‘common DNA’, he is keen to expand on the Spanish offering with the new Soho site, opening later this year.

“I want now to take it further and expand what we offer but I didn’t want to open a fourth restaurant at this stage, just a different one – and decided the best solution all-round was to close Encant and focus on Sibarita and Soho,” said Garvey.

The chef also confirmed he has completed a buy-out of his investors to take ownership of his existing restaurants under the newly-incorporated Garvey Restaurant Holdings, with key team members including head chef Krisztian Palinzkas, operations manager Claudio di Martino and executive assistant Marsida Rexhepaj given shares in the business.

Encant joins a growing number of well-known restaurants to have announced their closure since the start of the year.

Earlier this week Chris and Jeff Galvin confirmed that their original London restaurant Galvin de Luxe will shut its doors​ in February, while Birmingham’s Turners at 69 closed just a few months after losing its Michelin star.

Related topics: Venues

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